Malpractice from someone you trust may inflict injuries that change your life forever. The term “malpractice” is usually defined as when a professional fails to properly execute their duty to a client. These professionals are supposed to follow industry standards, and deviating from them often causes life-altering situations.
Perhaps you’re in that same category as you currently face serious injuries from medical malpractice here in San Antonio, Texas. Numerous statistics show how common medical malpractice is here. However, other forms of malpractice occur across multiple industries.
You need good legal representation to investigate your case and secure compensation. Take a look at how to find a good malpractice lawyer.
How Common Is Medical Malpractice in San Antonio?
Medical malpractice is now the third-leading cause of death in the United States. This is going by pre-COVID-19 statistics, but still exceeding those who die from heart disease or cancer.
This eye-opening statistic shows how many medical mistakes are out there. While it shouldn’t dissuade you from seeking medical treatments, human mistakes are far too prevalent in the medical industry.
When malpractice occurs, many doctors and other medical professionals try to cover up their errors. Because it hurts their practices and careers, the cover-ups continue unabated. Without legal help, you’re likely at the mercy of a medical doctor’s legal team to undermine your injuries.
Medical malpractice here in San Antonio is seen on an annual basis, with COVID-19 malpractice cases on the uptick over the last year. Yet, it’s always more than just COVID-19 medical mistakes.
Several medical categories still need major reform to stop malpractice from occurring. Some of those involve caring for the elderly in nursing homes, a problem law firms encounter in Texas consistently.
Common Medical Malpractice Cases
Nursing home abuse is one of the most horrific malpractice categories because our local elderly population deserves so much better. No one wants to think that their aging loved ones are perhaps suffering through abuse or even sexual assault in a nursing home.
Unfortunately, it continues to happen, with some clients afraid to take legal action. They shouldn’t fear, because the law is on their side to gain justice.
While nursing home abuse is one of the worst of all malpractice cases, it’s common to see these others as well, including here in San Antonio:
The thought of a newborn being the victim of medical error is also too terrible for words. Birth trauma is when those working in birth delivery make a critical mistake that causes the newborn to develop cerebral palsy.
An otherwise healthy baby could end up fighting for their life or living with a disability for the rest of their life. Irreversible medical negligence like this deserves compensation for the parents who have to spend extra money to care for their children through their development.
Another disease brought on from birth center negligence is Brachial Plexus injury. You may also know this as Erb’s Palsy. When these nerves are disturbed during the birth process, it causes arm weakness and loss of motion.
No one can reverse these, even though they do have treatments. Only compensation from the medical center responsible pays for your child’s medical bills.
Broken Bones and Nerve Damage
Many might think broken bones and nerve damage can heal over time. When they happen due to medical malpractice, a patient like you might not turn out as fortunate.
Those who suffer broken bones in medical mishaps sometimes have to deal with bone pain for life. Nerve damage is just as bad and can frequently cause mobility difficulties.
Should you need to stay in top physical shape for a job, having these injuries may mean having to change careers, or not working at all. Some nerve and bone damage could place you in a wheelchair, creating challenges in bringing back the quality of life you previously had.
Infections After Surgery
The hours and days after surgery are critical in preventing infections. Negligent surgeons, doctors, or nurses sometimes make critical mistakes in not preventing infections in their patients.
A serious infection after surgery is sometimes life-threatening, if not leading to further long-term health complications. It could even lead to another medical problem requiring longer hospitalization. Or, it could lead to a condition that lasts a lifetime.
No patient should tolerate any of this when it changes your life and those of everyone close to you.
Other Malpractice Categories
Medical malpractice can happen with prescription drugs, and even in medical drugs being defective. Still, malpractice goes beyond the medical and into car accidents, oil rig injuries, property damage, and insurance bad faith as just starters.
All of these can fall under a failure of “Duty of Care” where you place your health and safety into the hands of others doing something for you.
What should you do first when considering legal help?
Your First Step After Your Accident
Above all, take time to get your health back in order after a malpractice event. It’s important to think of your health first and seek further medical help if necessary.
Financial difficulty is possibly around the corner, though, due to your medical bills. You need to think about seeking legal help to get a settlement from those who caused your injuries.
To find a good malpractice lawyer here in San Antonio, it’s important to find a firm that has the proper experience to handle your particular case. Look at their list of cases and the results as a way to vet.
Contacting a lawyer needs to be done as soon as possible to get your case rolling. Maybe your injuries prevent you from calling a malpractice lawyer immediately. Consider having a close family member or friend call on your behalf to get your case going.
Incidentally, you can find a good malpractice lawyer by simply doing a Google search within your local area.
What will your malpractice attorney do for you once you hire them? They’ll help guide you through the legal process step by step.
A good malpractice lawyer goes to work immediately for you to investigate your case. Many of them do free consultations to look at the evidence available and whether you can realistically win a settlement.
Once a lawyer thinks you have a real case, your lawyer visits the scene where the accident occurred. For medical malpractice cases, it usually means visiting hospitals or other medical establishments.
Your lawyer may interview witnesses and gather physical evidence to help your case. This might also mean acquiring security camera footage showing the incident taking place. Obtaining this footage sometimes involves obtaining a subpoena for the medical facility to turn over security camera video.
Above all, though, your medical bills tell the real story of what happened. Your severe injuries prove some sort of malpractice took place. Those bills may already total into the five or six figures, placing you in financial jeopardy.
The best malpractice lawyers put your mind at ease. Rather than worry about your bills, they’ll fight to win you compensation and allow you to heal in the interim.
Negotiate With Insurance Companies
Most medical institutions have liability insurance to cover any malpractice claims. Other companies responsible for malpractice probably have similar insurance.
Going up against these insurance companies to win you a settlement is a major legal challenge that only the most experienced lawyers do well. Be prepared for the insurance company to attempt contact with you first. They’ll try to offer you a low settlement to avoid prolonging the case or going to trial.
Don’t take it, and don’t say anything to them either. Anything you say now to them can easily be twisted later and may ruin any chance of a fair settlement.
Always let your malpractice lawyer handle insurance negotiations. They know how they operate and the tricks they pull on those suffering from injuries.
Being major medical institutions, their insurance companies are always more powerful. As a result, the insurance company tries to minimize your injuries, something your lawyer works hard to fight against.
Your evidence is key to proving the pain and suffering you’ll endure for years to come. Most insurance companies want to settle to avoid lengthy trials, but what kind of settlement can you expect from your malpractice lawyer?
Numerous malpractice lawyers continue to find large settlements for their clients. You could win the same based on the evidence of your case. Regardless, never expect a specific settlement amount. All settlements or awards are different based on unique case variables.
What’s most important is you have no financial stress during the legal process. Ethical malpractice lawyers work tirelessly for you without bothering you with attorney’s bills.
Most malpractice law firms work on a contingency fee basis, meaning you won’t have to worry about paying your lawyer while trying to recover. Stress is one of the worst things to go through when recovering from injuries. Contingency fees allow you to rest easy and not think about legal bills until your settlement finalizes.
Suing for Damages
Maybe the settlement process failed to produce a fair offer, or you may want to pursue punitive damages against the individual, people, or company causing your injuries. Make sure the lawyer you hire has experience in this area because it often involves a trial.
Your right to sue damages is justified based on the type of injuries you suffered. Punitive damages in lawsuits, for example, are meant to send a message that the defendant’s behavior was especially egregious. Medical malpractice often falls under this category, no matter if what happened is considered an accident.
Keep in mind that pursuing damages through the court means suing the company or a person directly. Getting money from them directly is possible, albeit often depending on their financial condition. But a good San Antonio malpractice lawyer can evaluate your claim and let you know if your case is worth pursuing.